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Message of the Day: The Supremacy of Love

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.” (1 Corinthians 13:1-3, NKJV)

The Corinthians were impressed with people who exercised the more spectacular gifts. Paul reminds them that no matter what gifts they have – tongues, prophecy, wisdom, knowledge, faith – if they lack love they are not merely unimportant, they are nothing (13:1-2). People may be so generous with their goods and money that in the end they themselves become poor. They may be so faithful to their duty that they sacrifice their lives. But without love they have gained nothing (13:3).

Love is supreme! Love is the Christians’ most effective weapon. It is the essence of God’s nature, the perfection of human character; the most powerful, ultimate force in the universe. Without love, all the various gifts of the Spirit are of no avail. The Greek word for love (charity, KJV) in this passage is agapē (ἀγάπη). It indicates a selfless concern for the welfare of others that is not called forth by any quality of lovableness in the person loved, but is the product of a will to love in obedience to God’s command. It is like Christ’s love manifested on the cross.

There is no proper exercise of the spiritual gifts apart from love; there is no love in the church apart from the exercise of spiritual gifts.

Sources:

Gundry, Robert H. A Survey of the New Testament. Third Edition. Manila, Philippines: OMF Literature, INC., 1994.

Halley, Henry H. Halley’s Bible Handbook. ePub Format. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2011-2019.

Zondervan NASB Study Bible. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 1999.

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